Nurse practitioner plays multi-faceted roles

In addition to her work as a nurse practitioner in primary health care, Kim Lamarche is an educator and a researcher. The DNP (Doctorate in Nursing Practice) spends a third of her time as tenured associate faculty member with Athabasca University – touted as a leader in undergraduate and graduate education in Canada—teaching NPs via online courses.

She spends another third of time on research, which revolves in part around the technology that’s used for teaching health professionals online. “I study how we can best use MOOCS – Massive Open Online Courses – for NPs’ continuing education,” she says, noting that Athabasca University teaches exclusively online.

The online world is a big part of professional practice too, but, as Lamarche explains: “A health care professional may have 17 different online systems to use in the run of a day, but little or no training in using them. Some heath care providers are business owners too, which is challenging. We need to teach people how to use all these systems appropriately.”

Also on Lamarche’s radar is a look at job satisfaction among health care professionals. Add to that her role in community service: past president of the College of Registered Nurses, International Council of Nurses board member and professional practice chair for NSHA’s Eastern Zone. Oh—and she just happens to have nursed for Canada’s Navy, Army and Coast Guard and continues in the Army Reserves. Seems like there isn’t much this DNP doesn’t do.